Marketing campaigns can go wrong in many ways. Such stumbles can result from causes such as poorly conceived creative material, targeting the wrong audience, and mistaking consumer demand, among others. If your marketing campaign has drifted off course, taking action to bring it back on course is essential to achieving a reasonable cost/benefit result. The following tips cover various steps you can take to fix an underperforming marketing campaign.
Target the Appropriate Audience
You may have the best marketing campaign around, but if the audience you are targeting is not interested in the products you are selling, all your efforts in this regard will be wasted. If a marketing campaign is not delivering the expected results, one step you should take to help turn it around is to examine the audience being targeted. Ask who is the targeted persona and how effectively that persona is being addressed by the marketing campaign. Focus on what changes can be made to more effectively target the selected persona.
If you are running an email marketing campaign, segment your mailing list by persona and send emails only to those personas most likely to be interested in the subject. Doing so is likely to increase the click-through rate (CTR) on emails you send. If you are advertising on the web, you can target your ads more narrowly by limiting the type of websites they are displayed on. For instance, if you were marketing a product for young men you might specify that your ads appear only on sites that cover sports or gaming. If your products appeal to business clients, having your ads show up on financial news shows could be a good strategy.
Make Sure Your Product Meets a Market Need
A great product does not ensure a successful marketing campaign – there needs to be demand as well. By the same token, if your marketing campaign does not address the audience’s need for the product properly, your results are likely to be less-than-stellar. Determine what needs the product meets and base your marketing efforts around this.
A variety of methods can be used to help you figure out what market need your product best meets. You can run surveys on your website, or perform market research using focus groups or online metrics that track what keywords related to your product people search for most. Use an online notepad to share your findings with your team to get their feedback on your results as well.
Look for what is known as the “pain” point to help establish what market need your product serves. This refers to a situation where without your product the customer is unable to accomplish something, or is not able to accomplish it to their satisfaction. For instance, if you are marketing exercise equipment, the pain point is the lack of fitness or potential injury issues that the product helps solve. If you are marketing household cleaning equipment, the pain point is the messiness that occurs without use of your product to clean it up.
Monitor Relevant Metrics
Tracking your digital marketing efforts via various metrics is essential to maximize their impact. But if you aren’t monitoring relevant metrics, your ability to optimize your marketing efforts is handicapped. Because of this, it pays to rigorously review the measures you are using to make sure they are providing useful information.
What KPIs should you focus on? This depends on the purpose and method of your campaign. Some metrics that can be helpful include:
- Extended time windows: If you are just looking at performance metrics over 30 days, or one or two weeks at a time you may be missing trends which only become evident over longer periods of time. Try to run performance metrics over 60 and 90-day periods as well to get a fuller picture.
- Audience characteristics: To make sure your marketing efforts are aimed at the right audience, it is important to analyze who is seeing your ads. This helps you determine whether to focus on redoing the campaign’s content or on targeting a different set of consumers. Web analytics allow you to be precise when evaluating who is viewing your campaigns, giving you the detailed information you need to target your campaigns as efficiently as possible.
- Cost: Tracking the cost of your campaigns is vital to allow you to make sure that you are getting your money’s worth out of them. If you are running an internet campaign, monitoring cost per click (CPC) is a handy way of seeing if your ads are cost effective. If your campaign’s main focus is simply to increase awareness of your company or products, you may want to monitor cost per impression, which just shows the number of eyeballs which have viewed your ad, as opposed to measuring who has clicked on the ad to get more information.
One problem that can arise with a marketing campaign is that the design of the creative aspects of the campaign is fine, but the marketing approach is ineffective. For instance, if you are running a marketing campaign for a major sale at your clothing store, but the campaign is targeting people from around the country, even if it is well-designed you are likely to be reaching many people for whom your store is not a convenient shopping option. A more effective approach would be to target internet visitors within your geographic region rather than diluting your efforts by casting too wide a net.
Another example would be targeting a millennial crowd via legacy media such as newspapers and television, rather than designing an online outreach campaign more likely to appeal to consumers from this generation. If you are mounting an online marketing campaign, there are a variety of different tactics to choose from. You can take a broad approach, targeting the most popular websites, regardless of subject. You can also pursue a more targeted approach, by requesting that the websites your ad appears on are aligned with your products in terms of the consumers that commonly visit the sites.
Don’t be afraid to try a variety of approaches to improve a faltering campaign. Using focus groups is one technique that can be helpful in determining what is wrong, or right, about a particular creative element. Whether this is a landing page, billboard, advertisement, or something else, your job is to find out what makes it work or fall short.
You can also use A/B testing on your internet ads by creating two separate ads and then going with the one that gets the best results. Another way to give new life to a faltering marketing campaign is to see what your competition is doing. Make changes to your campaign inspired by other successful campaigns to give a boost to your marketing efforts.
Thinking outside the box can be crucial to resuscitating a failed campaign. If you find that your current approach is not working, you may want to try an approach that is radically different. For example, if text ads are not getting the desired reaction, you could use video ads instead. If a celebrity spokesperson is not having a measurable impact, try using customers of your product as spokespeople. Be imaginative and unleash your creativity to come up with a variety of different approaches to revive your marketing campaign.
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